Part 7: Spring 2018 Labs

122 Pinterest as a Teaching Tool with Mark Nelson – 04.20.2018

In the April 20, 2018 Active Teaching Lab, Mark Nelson from the School of Human Ecology shared how he uses Pinterest for group activities as an extension beyond the classroom. Participants considered how Pinterest can be used to engage students in courses across a variety of fields. Check out the session’s activity sheet to learn more.


  • Many students already have and use Pinterest, so employing it for academic purposes requires little learner training. 
  • The visual nature of Pinterest is ideal for photo essays and one-glance representations of student development and evolution of thought. 
  • Pinterest allows students to curate visual content with text fields for short analysis. These pins can be used by instructor in later semesters.
  • Group boards enable students to collaborate in posting examples and applications of course content. Mark creates a single account and/or group for all students to create a holistic representation of concepts from the class.
  • Pinterest encourages and facilitates affinity groups in which students can make connections with people who have similar interests.
  • Textbooks that deal with changing culture and societal thought are limited in their currency and can quickly become outdated. Pinterest builds a compilation of content that records history as it unfolds.


Active Teaching Labs are held Fridays from 8:30-9:45am in room 120, Middleton Building (1305 Linden Dr.) as well as some Wednesdays from 12:30-1:30pm in room 302 Middleton Building. Check out upcoming Labs or read the recaps from past Labs.

Similar to the Active Teaching Labs, Active Teaching Exchanges feature instructors sharing their teaching experiences with tools and techniques, but provide more time for discussion without the hands-on investigation time. Exchanges are are held Thursdays from 1-2pm in room 120, Middleton Building. See the full calendar of both events. Stay informed about upcoming Labs and Exchanges by signing up for regular announcements by sending an email to



Active Teaching Lab eJournal Copyright © 2016 by DoIT Academic Technology and the UW-Madison Teaching Academy; Jennifer Hornbaker; John Martin; Julie Johnson; Karin Spader; Margaret Merrill; Margaret Murphy; and Jeffrey Thomas. All Rights Reserved.

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